Securing Project Financing Amid Market Volatility

Fifield Cos.' Navi Sandhu joins Senior Editor Laura Calugar in a podcast interview on why real estate development is all about proper judgement.

Navi Sandhu, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions, Finance and Development, Fifield Cos. Image courtesy of Fifield Cos.

The financial climate is changing rapidly, with numerous challenges on the horizon: from rising interest rates to high development costs, a looming recession and a complicated international context. The demand is clearly there. But evaluating growth markets and accurately planning financials over an 18- to 24-month project cycle has become extremely challenging. Developers are already experiencing difficulties in securing project financing, which is causing construction delays and a slowdown in multifamily construction starts across the country.

Based in Chicago but operating in several U.S. markets, Fifield Cos. has executed more than $7 billion in developments in the past four decades, including more than 13,000 residential units. As Senior Vice President of Acquisitions, Finance and Development, Navi Sandhu leads the company’s acquisition efforts and underwriting of Florida and California land sites for ground-up multifamily development or value-add acquisition opportunities. She is in charge of raising debt, mezzanine debt, preferred equity and common equity capital for Fifield projects, along with working on company-level capital strategy.

LISTEN TO: Helping Minority Developers Scale Up

Sandhu joined Multi-Housing News Senior Editor Laura Calugar for this month’s episode of Mission Success: Women in Multifamily, the podcast series dedicated to female leaders in the multifamily industry. Sandhu talks about how valuable time is in development deals today, the adjustments developers need to make when evaluating the viability of new projects, and also touches on construction costs and why she expects a slowdown in capital markets. Toward the end of the conversation, she reveals more about her work as a member of the ULI Chicago chapter.

Here’s what you’ll hear about in this episode:

  • Key steps to getting development done today (1:08)
  • How difficult planning has become (6:07)
  • Difficulties in accessing funds for new projects (10:32)
  • Securing project financing going forward (13:55)
  • How crowdfunding has helped Fifield (16:45)
  • Is crowdfunding the future of multifamily investment? (20:14)
  • Fifield’s entry into the greater Miami market (23:10)
  • What it’s like to be in charge of multifamily acquisitions, finance and development today (26:14)
  • Sandhu’s activity as a member of the ULI Chicago chapter (29:35)

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